A Light-sport Aircraft (LSA) category special airworthiness certificate is issued to operate an aircraft that:
  • Has not been previously issued an airworthiness certificate or an equivalent airworthiness certificate issued by the U.S. or a foreign civil aviation authority,
  • Is in a condition for safe operation,
  • Was built and tested to the applicable consensus standards by the aircraft’s manufacturer, and
  • Possesses the manufacturer’s statement of compliance.
Aircraft classes meeting the definition of Light Sport Aircraft contained in 14 CFR 1.1 that are eligible for LSA category special airworthiness certificates are:
  • Airplanes,
  • Gliders,
  • Powered parachutes,
  • Weight-shift-control aircraft (commonly called trikes), and
  • Lighter-than-air aircraft (balloons and airships) .
LSA manufactured outside the United States may be issued special airworthiness certificates when proof is provided to show:
  • Compliance to the airworthiness regulations, 14 CFR 21.190,
  • The LSA has been manufactured in a country with which the U.S. has a Bilateral Airworthiness Agreement or BASA with associated IPA or equivalent airworthiness agreement, and
  • The aircraft is eligible for an airworthiness certificate or similar certification in its country of manufacture.

Special airworthiness certificates regulations & policies